Michael S Kuhns, PhD

Professor, Immunobiology
Professor, BIO5 Institute
Professor, Genetics-GIDP

Michael Kuhns did his PhD training with James Allison at UC Berkeley studying the role that CTLA-4 plays in regulating CD4 T cell responses. He then went on to Stanford University for his postdoctoral studies with Mark Davis, studying the architecture and function of the TCR-CD3 complex, and joined the Department of Immunobiology at the University of Arizona in 2010. When in search of a mental diversion, he enjoys mountain biking and hiking in the local desert and sky islands.

  • BS: University of Arizona
  • PhD: University of California, Berkeley
  • Post-doctoral Fellow: Stanford University

Recent Publications


Kobayashi, S., M. A. Thelin, H. L. Parrish, N. R. Deshpande, M. S. Lee, A. Karimzadeh, M. A. Niewczas, T. Serwold, and M. S. Kuhns, "A biomimetic five-module chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) designed to target and eliminate antigen-specific T cells.", Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A, vol. 117, issue 46, pp. 28950-28959, 2020 Nov 17. PMCID: PMC7682351  PMID: 33139567


Krummel, M., C. Blish, M. Kuhns, K. Cadwell, A. Oberst, A. Goldrath, M. K Ansel, H. Chi, R. O'Connell, J. E Wherry, et al., "Universal Principled Review: A Community-Driven Method to Improve Peer Review.", Cell, vol. 179, issue 7, pp. 1441-1445, 2019 Dec 12. PMID: 31835023


Deshpande, N. R., J. L. Uhrlaub, S. Sing Way, J. Nikolich-Zugich, and M. S. Kuhns, "A disconnect between precursor frequency, expansion potential, and site-specific CD4+ T cell responses in aged mice.", PLoS One, vol. 13, issue 6, pp. e0198354, 2018. PMCID: PMC5986155  PMID: 29864157
Lichauco, K., M. S. Lee, and M. S. Kuhns, "Bonds Voyage! A Dissociative Model of TCR-CD3 Triggering Is Proposed.", Immunity, vol. 49, issue 5, pp. 786-788, 2018 11 20. PMID: 30462991
Glassman, C. R., H. L. Parrish, M. S. Lee, and M. S. Kuhns, "Reciprocal TCR-CD3 and CD4 Engagement of a Nucleating pMHCII Stabilizes a Functional Receptor Macrocomplex.", Cell Rep, vol. 22, issue 5, pp. 1263-1275, 2018 Jan 30. PMCID: PMC5813697  PMID: 29386113


Bethune, M. T., M. H. Gee, M. Bunse, M. S. Lee, E. H. Gschweng, M. S. Pagadala, J. Zhou, D. Cheng, J. R. Heath, D. B. Kohn, et al., "Domain-swapped T cell receptors improve the safety of TCR gene therapy.", Elife, vol. 5, 2016 11 08. PMCID: PMC5101000  PMID: 27823582
Parrish, H. L., C. R. Glassman, M. M. Keenen, N. R. Deshpande, M. P. Bronnimann, and M. S. Kuhns, "Correction: A Transmembrane Domain GGxxG Motif in CD4 Contributes to Its Lck-Independent Function but Does Not Mediate CD4 Dimerization.", PLoS One, vol. 11, issue 3, pp. e0150876, 2016. PMCID: PMC4773146  PMID: 26930656
Parrish, H. L., N. R. Deshpande, J. Vasic, and M. S. Kuhns, "Functional evidence for TCR-intrinsic specificity for MHCII.", Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A, 2016 Feb 1. PMID: 26831112
Glassman, C. R., H. L. Parrish, N. R. Deshpande, and M. S. Kuhns, "The CD4 and CD3δε Cytosolic Juxtamembrane Regions Are Proximal within a Compact TCR-CD3-pMHC-CD4 Macrocomplex.", J Immunol, vol. 196, issue 11, pp. 4713-22, 2016 06 01. PMCID: PMC4875830  PMID: 27183595


Lee, M. S., C. R. Glassman, N. R. Deshpande, H. B. Badgandi, H. L. Parrish, C. Uttamapinant, P. S. Stawski, A. Y. Ting, and M. S. Kuhns, "A Mechanical Switch Couples T Cell Receptor Triggering to the Cytoplasmic Juxtamembrane Regions of CD3ζζ.", Immunity, vol. 43, issue 2, pp. 227-39, 2015 Aug 18. PMCID: PMC4545397  PMID: 26231119